As we enter a truly global epoch we need a historical awareness to match the times. This book offers a new scholarly perspective, a new historical consciousness, and a new sub-field of history—global history—that will have a major impact on the way we write history and make policy in the future. The need for a new approach can be seen everywhere: in environmental problems that ignore national boundaries, in nuclear threats that have no territorial limitations; in the rapid increase in multi-national economic activity; and in advances in space exploration and communication satellites that link peoples to a degree hitherto unimagined. The contributors to this book offer both a theoretical treatment and a number of examples of what global history is and how it might be written.It is recognized that global history is not the only history that can or should be written, and that globalism is often matched by increased localism, thus requiring a keen sense of the dialectic involved. New actors need to be identified and studied on the historical stage, other than the nation state. Though global history is a form of contemporary history, starting from our present moment it must look backward, with the range depending on the problem. Thus, global history seeks to be methodologically sophisticated while pioneering a new way of thinking about history in the coming millenium.
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